Sound Very Soft on Left Speaker

I have not been able to solve this issue for years. All my openSUSE installations, my left speaker has always had very soft sound. This has been the case with Creative SoundBlaster and 7.1 speakers and also Acer notebooks.The left speaker on my notebook now is almost inaudible. The sound chip is Realtek ALC271X.Does any one have any idea how to fix this? it should be some setting in the driver that is not correct.

chingl@trinity:~> lsmod | grep sound
soundcore 15047 2 snd,snd_hda_codec
chingl@trinity:~>
chingl@trinity:~> lsmod | grep audio
chingl@trinity:~> lsmod | grep intel
snd_hda_intel 34475 5
snd_hda_controller 35103 1 snd_hda_intel
snd_hda_codec 151970 5 snd_hda_codec_realtek,snd_hda_codec_hdmi,snd_hda_codec_generic,snd_hda_intel,snd_hda_controller
snd_pcm 116916 4 snd_hda_codec_hdmi,snd_hda_codec,snd_hda_intel,snd_hda_controller
snd 87947 18 snd_hda_codec_realtek,snd_hwdep,snd_timer,snd_hda_codec_hdmi,snd_pcm,snd_hda_codec_generic,snd_hda_codec,snd_hda_intel
ghash_clmulni_intel 13230 0
aesni_intel 152552 1
aes_x86_64 17131 1 aesni_intel
lrw 13286 1 aesni_intel
glue_helper 13990 1 aesni_intel
ablk_helper 13597 1 aesni_intel
cryptd 16263 3 ghash_clmulni_intel,aesni_intel,ablk_helper
crc32c_intel 22094 1
chingl@trinity:~>

I note I have installed openSUSE on over a dozen different platforms over the years, including Creative Sound Blaster and never encountered such.

So given openSUSE does not have this when I install, and given it has this on your installs, I am trying to figure out why.

What sound /speaker test are you using ?

Do you notice same with this command (below) in a konsole/xterm ?


speaker-test -c4 -l2 -twav

If you note such … then please run the following diagnostic script in a konsole/xterm as a regular user on EACH of your PCs that you claim have this problem, with them connected to the internet , and let the script run to completion. Select the SHARE/UPLOAD option.

/usr/sbin/alsa-info.sh 

When the script completes it will provide you a web-address/URL that you are to share. Please post those addresses here for each PC that you claim has this problem.

I will look at it and see if I can see anything in common with each of the cases where you claim this problem exits.

As noted, on over a dozen different platforms over the years (on openSUSE and before then SuSE-Pro), including hardware such as Creative Sound Blaster and never have I encountered such (going back > 10 years ).
.

You could also try swapping out the cable if you are using an external amp/speaker setup. I say this as it sounds more like a hardware issue.

Could be the cable? Did you try to connect the speakers to something else to test if the left speaker functions properly?

>>What sound /speaker test are you using ?

This is an Acer Aspire V3-551G. The speakers are built -in, no external cables.
It came with Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit. Every thing worked fine when I tested it before installing openSUSE 12.3 on a new hard drive. Immediately I got this issue of left speaker with almost inaudible sound. So it is not a hardware issue. The same issue persists after I installed openSUSE 13.2. I got the same issue with an older Acer notenook as well with openSUSE 11.0 and 11.4.

>>Do you notice same with this command (below) in a konsole/xterm ?
>>


>>speaker-test -c4 -l2 -twav
>>

This is the command line version of the KDE audio set-up which I use to test. Yes, I can hardly hear the left speaker.

If you note such … then please run the following diagnostic script in a konsole/xterm as a regular user on EACH of your PCs that you claim have this problem, with them connected to >>the internet , and let the script run to completion. Select the SHARE/UPLOAD option.

/usr/sbin/alsa-info.sh 

>>When the script completes it will provide you a web-address/URL that you are to share. Please post those addresses here for each PC that you claim has this problem.

>>I will look at it and see if I can see anything in common with each of the cases where you claim this problem exits.

http://www.alsa-project.org/db/?f=0c7fde63366f39ee86958b7911880a37e5aa8c24

If you could see any issue here I would be so grateful.

The sound card you have selected appears to be set to mono… at least to my untrained eye. Try selecting the Realtek chip as sound source in yast.

Do you mean add a sound card in YAST? There is no entry for Realtek in the list.

So what drivers do you see??

It is the big canned list of chips that I presume you also see. But no Realtek chips there.

I mean used not a list of available

Normally you see one or 2 driver in the very first screen. Since you have sound you must have at least one setup

Install pavucontrol and see if that program can help. Nothing should be set to mono

The most obvious thing I see here is your speaker volume is set way too high. It should not be necessary to set to 100%. Likely you have it set into distortion and once into distortion all ‘bets are off’ wrt balance…

Note the mixer from that script :


**Simple mixer control 'Master',0**
  Capabilities: pvolume pvolume-joined pswitch pswitch-joined
  Playback channels: Mono
  Limits: Playback 0 - 87
  Mono: Playback 87 **[100%]** [0.00dB] [on]
**Simple mixer control 'Speaker',0**
  Capabilities: pvolume pswitch
  Playback channels: Front Left - Front Right
  Limits: Playback 0 - 87
  Mono:
  Front Left: Playback 87 **[100%]** [0.00dB] [on]
  Front Right: Playback 87 **[100%]** [0.00dB] [on]
**Simple mixer control 'PCM',0**
  Capabilities: pvolume
  Playback channels: Front Left - Front Right
  Limits: Playback 0 - 255
  Mono:
  Front Left: Playback 255 **[100%]** [0.00dB]
  Front Right: Playback 255 **[100%]** [0.00dB]

Follow also the advice given wrt installing and running ‘pavucontrol’.

I suppose it is possible that one may need to force an alsa model config upon boot - but based on your comments where you claim multiple hardware and multiple installs have the same problem, then it is unlikely an alsa model config. More likely is a systemic setup error, as no one on this thread, where likely we have setup dozens of computers combined, have ever seen this problem. Hence by logic, and not a criticism, but rather by logic the only common factor between your various PCs are you and are openSUSE. But none of us have this problem with many more (than you) openSUSE installs on many more (than you) hardware. That suggests this is not an openSUSE OS issue but rather it points to a systemic misconfiguration of openSUSE.

Another idea - you noted you used a “new hard drive” with openSUSE - does that mean you had to open up the inside of the laptop to install a “new hard drive” ? Could you have nipped/ touched the speaker wire when you did so ?

In case curious, the alsa model config’ sI was referrnig to (for an ALC270) are:


ALC269/270/275/276/28x/29x
======
  laptop-amic		Laptops with analog-mic input
  laptop-dmic		Laptops with digital-mic input
  alc269-dmic		Enable ALC269(VA) digital mic workaround
  alc271-dmic		Enable ALC271X digital mic workaround
  inv-dmic		Inverted internal mic workaround
  headset-mic		Indicates a combined headset (headphone+mic) jack
  lenovo-dock   	Enables docking station I/O for some Lenovos
  dell-headset-multi	Headset jack, which can also be used as mic-in
  dell-headset-dock	Headset jack (without mic-in), and also dock I/O

There is no ALC27x nor ALC271x entry.

I have installed pavucontrol, tried setting the volume to lower values, and found that the problem is not solved by any settings of volume levels.

I suppose it is possible that one may need to force an alsa model config upon boot - but based on your comments where you claim multiple hardware and multiple installs have the same problem, then it is unlikely an alsa model config.

Another idea - you noted you used a “new hard drive” with openSUSE - does that mean you had to open up the inside of the laptop to install a “new hard drive” ? Could you have nipped/ touched the speaker wire when you did so ?

In case curious, the alsa model config’ sI was referrnig to (for an ALC270) are:

ALC269/270/275/276/28x/29x

laptop-amic Laptops with analog-mic input
laptop-dmic Laptops with digital-mic input
alc269-dmic Enable ALC269(VA) digital mic workaround
alc271-dmic Enable ALC271X digital mic workaround
inv-dmic Inverted internal mic workaround
headset-mic Indicates a combined headset (headphone+mic) jack
lenovo-dock Enables docking station I/O for some Lenovos
dell-headset-multi Headset jack, which can also be used as mic-in
dell-headset-dock Headset jack (without mic-in), and also dock I/O

There is no ALC27x nor ALC271x entry.

I have tried setting the model in the config file to some models listed in the above doc, but it makes no difference. Even if I do not force the model, the codec has already been set correctly to ALC271X.

Acer notebooks have a hard drive bay with its own cover. Inside the bay there are only the hard drive bracket(s) and SATA port(s). There are no exposed cables so there is no possibility I could have touched the speaker cables from the hard drive bay.